Monday, December 1, 2008


I know. It's been almost a month since my last post about mom, the one where I let all of you wonderful people know that she died. I know I haven't emailed any of you to say thank you, or left you a comment to say as much either. There's a very good reason for that.

I'm hiding.

I am actively practicing avoidance. I wonder, can you really do that? If you're actively avoiding facing something, are you really avoiding facing it? You're aware of it...

At any rate, I'm not dealing. I refuse. I can't. I just...can't. I mean, I understand and accept that my mother is dead but I'm struggling. I'm not sure if I'm struggling more with the fact that she's gone and I don't really feel anything, or if I'm struggling with the fact that it doesn't seem like she's gone because she's been so mentally gone for such a long time. The person who was my mother has been gone for months - there's been a shell left, someone who looked like my mother, who occasionally acted like my mother, but was NOT my mother.

I was fine until the burial. The viewing was fine, lots of people were there, there was a video that was put together of pictures of mom. The funeral was fine (why do people say beautiful?). Several stories of mom, I sang (since when did I become a soprano?!), and mom looked better in death than she had in life for many years. I didn't realize just how awful she'd come to look, until I saw her at the viewing. That's a very odd statement for me to's hard to say someone looks better dead. It was interesting to see the way others viewed my mother - when I thought she was crazy, they thought she was adventurous. :)

The burial...I lost it. I just sobbed and sobbed at the end, while Aaron held me and dad rubbed my back. I think I even made my father-in-law cry, while my mother-in-law was relieved to finally see me cry. She's been worried about me, a lot. I keep trying to tell her I'm fine - when have I ever NOT been fine and not exploded everywhere and made a mess of things? - but I don't think she believes me. Mom is buried at the Veteran's Cemetary here in town. Dad wanted her here so I could "take care" of the grave (put flowers and stuff on it). He didn't bother to ASK me if I wanted to, just assumed I would. I don't want to. I've never understood why we do that. I think it's to make US feel better, like we haven't forgotten them. I don't think that it matters - it's not like putting flowers on the grave is going to make me remember her any more than I already do. I don't WANT to remember her dead - I want to remember her alive.

Dad came up for Thanksgiving and brought a copy of the CD with pictures on it, and a copy of the audio of the funeral for me. Like I'm ever going to listen to it? He kept asking me on Thursday and Friday if I wanted to look at the pictures. He doesn't seem to understand that I can't, and I don't want to. I don't want to be reminded like that. I'm struggling. He actually made the comment a week or two ago when we were talking about the signs of grief that it's not like this came suddenly, that I really shouldn't be grieving too heavily at this point. I think I know what he was trying to say, but I still wanted to kick him. I got this thing in the mail from hospice on grief and what to expect and it turns out that a lot of what's been wrong with me for the past year or so, maybe longer, can be attributed to grief. This is good, I suppose, because it means that someday I might go back to "normal". On the other hand, people tell me I'll never be truly done grieving - it will just get less. Does that mean that this me is the new normal?

I haven't been sleeping again. Or at least, not well. Even through a full 10mg dose of Ambien, I've been waking up at 4am. Doc gave me a new time release Ambien, but it doesn't work well either - now I wake up at 5:30 instead. Lately I've been having lots of nightmares. Dreams about dreaming, and not good dreams in my dreams either. Death, dead bodies, chaos, decay, murder...gee, wonder what my brain is thinking about?

Ok, so this post got really long. I know I'm rambling, but that's because I'm avoiding going very deep into anything right now. I'm afraid I'll fall apart. I've lost my objectivity and it's killing me. Thank you ALL for all your comments on my post. I know I didn't respond, but I couldn't. Know that I saved them in my inbox so I could read them repeatedly in the days that followed.


Jess said...

I'm just so sorry still. It sucks to lose someone. I mean, it really really is awful.

Things can get better and you'll find your new normal.

I'm sorry your mom is gone.

serenity said...

I've been thinking about you. And sending you good thoughts.

The thing with grief? No one can tell you how or when to grieve. It just happens. And it's nonlinear. And it utterly sucks.

I've not lost a parent, but I've lost friends and family close to me. This, right now? Is a sort of your new normal, but not entirely. It DOES get better - it feels less like you're going to drown. Once that happens, then you CAN deal with it. And over time, it'll lessen and lessen.

Hugs. Hang in there, hon.


nancy said...

No, the grieving will always be there but it won't be as heavy as it is now. It will get better. You will be able to think of your mom and instead of crying, you'll be able to think of the good times instead. But if you think you may should be getting somewhat 'better' by now, since this wasn't anything sudden, maybe talk to your doctor. Sometimes people need to be "kickstarted" back into their normal. I don't think this will be your new normal. Unless, of course, you don't do anything about it.

I haven't lost a parent yet, but I lost my very best friend. I was friends with Karl since high school and friends with Ryan (girl) since college. It took until after college for them to meet, but they fell in love, married and had children (damn fertiles). In February of 2004, Karl died very unexpectedly.

Yes, it was hard for me. But for Ryan, his wife, it was terrible. After a few months, she got pharmacutical help to jumpstart her out of the grief. It worked and she was able to ween herself off after a year.

I'm definitely ~not~ saying you need "colorful medication", but sometimes it helps. You can't live with just going through the movements of life and not sleeping.

I'm with you on the gravesite thing. In fact, that's why I don't want a gravesite. It kind of forces a family to "take care" of the gravesite forever and ever. And what if you move? You get the guilt from that. So I want to be spread in the ocean and mountains, so I'l always be "part of the earth" so to speak.

Here's something that may make you laugh. The kid's great grandmother died recently and they were asking about what happens after they die, etc. I explained burial and creamation - all the details (incl fire and ash spreading). So when Tom came home that night, Ella said "Daddy! When mommy dies, we're going to set her ass on fire and throw her into the ocean!"

Poor tom was not ready for that statement. And the use of "ass" instead of "ash" was hilarious!!

Anywho, just trying to get a smile out of you.

Tigger, we are all here for you. Maybe you can blog your way through this pain. Just type away whenever you need an outlet. We all love you!


MrsSpock said...

Don't be surprised if grief is a lot longer road than people expect you to have.

I'm with you on the gravesite thing- my husband and I don't plan on being buried.

It will get better, though it doesn't seem like it now.


Jess said...

Hey...thinking of you.

Hope all is well and your "hiding" is thereputic.